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Nearly 1,000 children to attend free NJYS Black History Month Education Concert at UCPAC

originally published: 02/19/2024

Nearly 1,000 children to attend free NJYS Black History Month Education Concert at UCPAC

(RAHWAY, NJ) -- The New Jersey Youth Symphony (NJYS) announced that nearly 1,000 elementary and middle school students will attend a free Education Concert on Wednesday, February 21, 2024 at 10:00am at the Union County Performing Arts Center in Rahway. Nearly 600 students from Union County public schools and 300 students from Paterson Public Schools will attend this special event celebrating Black History Month with powerful music selections by Duke Ellington and William Grant Still. Led by Helen H. Cha-Pyo, the NJYS Youth Symphony will be joined by guest artist and tenor saxophonist Lance Bryant for the performance.

Said Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Helen H. Cha-Pyo, "As we celebrate our 45th anniversary season, the New Jersey Youth Symphony remains dedicated to training its students in a supportive yet rigorous environment, while encouraging them to use music to serve and inspire others. With our NJYS Youth Symphony musicians, predominantly high school students who serve as positive role models, we aim to ignite passion and excellence in our younger audience members. Hosting this educational concert is central to our mission, as it celebrates the legacies of Black composers including Duke Ellington and William Grant Still, while offering an immersive experience for attendees. Through creative and engaging introductions to each section of the orchestra, we aim to make this concert memorable and educational. Opening with the singing of the Black National Anthem Lift Every Voice and Sing underscores our dedication to celebrating the contributions of Black artists to our cultural heritage. We are honored to share this musical experience with our community, fostering a deeper appreciation for diversity and inclusion in the arts."

Wharton Arts’ mission is to offer accessible, high quality performing arts education that sparks personal growth and builds inclusive communities. Wharton Arts’ vision is for a transformative performing arts education in an inclusive community to be accessible for everyone.

Wharton Arts is New Jersey’s largest independent non-profit community performing arts education center serving over 2,000 students through a range of classes and ensembles. The 5 ensembles of the New Jersey Youth Chorus, an auditioned choral ensemble program for students in grades 3–12, encourage a love and appreciation of choral music while nurturing personal growth and creative development. The 15 ensembles of the New Jersey Youth Symphony, which serve nearly 600 students in grades 3–12 by audition, inspire young people to achieve musical excellence through high-level ensemble training and performance opportunities. Based in Paterson, the Paterson Music Project is an El Sistema-inspired program of Wharton Arts that uses music education as a vehicle for social action by empowering and inspiring young people to achieve their full potential through the community experience of ensemble learning and playing. From Pathways classes for young children to Lifelong Learning programs for adults, the Wharton Performing Arts School has a robust musical theater and drama program and offers both private and group classes for instruments and voice for all ages and all abilities. With the belief in the positive and unifying influence of music and that performing arts education should be accessible to all people regardless of their ability to pay, Wharton Arts offers need-based scholarships.

Wharton Arts is located in Berkeley Heights, New Providence, and Paterson, NJ and reaches students from 12 counties. All of Wharton Arts’ extraordinary teaching artists, faculty members, and conductors hold degrees in their teaching specialty and have been vetted and trained to enable our students to achieve their personal best.



 
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